New For November

Two new publications for November in the Year of the Great Plague .

The first new book to get published is brand new tale about Melody, the NBL.

Problems in the Pyrenees

Publishing 1st November 2020

Melody is on an early summer holiday on the Mediterranean coast of France, when she gets a call from her ‘Head of Research’. They have a new set of problems to solve, just a few kilometers away in the foothills of the Pyrenees.

Generous with her time, the generously proportioned Problem Solver swings into action.

Problems in the Pyrenees

Read more Problems in the Pyrenees

The other November publication is an old favourite.

The Uncovered Policeman: The Whole Story

Rags, The Uncovered Policeman finally gets the collection treatment, all twelve (Yes! 12) of the mainline stories from the Uncovered Policeman (the original novella) through to A New Home in the Sun in a single paperback volume.

There wasn’t room in the binding for the short stories!

even so, the collection turns out to be quite a tome; 330 000 words, 655 A4 pages and weighing in at almost 2kg.

All for little more than the price of the series in Kindle e-book format!

The Proof cover shot of The Uncovered Policeman: The Whole Story

The Whole Story joins The Uncovered Policeman: Secret Casebooks in November, in time for Christmas. Sadly it wont be available in the Bookstore because the shipping costs are outrageous.

A Flash Fiction Exercise

Haunted House is a story made up to meet a string of keywords, characters and a situation during a creative writing class. Start to finish in 20 minutes … Flash fiction!

See if you can spot my 5 required elements! I enjoyed writing this little tale, I hope you enjoy the silliness!

The Haunted House

No money, nowhere to stay and the gig cancelled, what was I going to do? I’d wandered around town and it appeared that everywhere was in lock-down. It was getting cold, I needed somewhere to sleep. 

I just wish I hadn’t chosen that place.

It was a deserted house. The door was open so why not. I let myself in and by the dying light of the day, filtered through the grimy windows, I looked around. There was dust everywhere but the sofa in what had been the lounge looked pretty solid and would be better than sleeping on the floor. 

I propped my guitar in one of the armchairs, opened my rucksack. The first thing I pulled out was the sandwich I’d made before leaving home. The one and only thing that had gone right all day. OK so the bread was a little stale, but it was still edible.  As I chewed the dry bread and cheese, I reviewed the day.

It had been a bit of a red-letter day! I had a paying gig. I play guitar and sing songs, folky sort of things. I am available to play in pubs, clubs, private parties, christenings and bar mitzvahs, give me a call!

It has been a while since I had a paying gig, so I took the bus from home. It was a long ride, but cheaper than the train, and I’d have to find somewhere to sleep overnight. The buses stop running at eight in the evening, public service for you. 

As I was saying, I’d got to the town, found the pub I was supposed to be playing; it was shut. A family bereavement according to the note on the door. I expected there would be a message on the answering machine at home. Just as well I’d spent the last of my dole money on a return ticket! 

I’d walked the streets looking for somewhere to sleep and the streets were deserted. It was strange, nobody walking the dog and no cars moving either, nobody. Then I’d spotted this place.

My sandwich finished, I settled down on the sofa, pulled my coat tight around me and tried to get to sleep. In the distance I could hear the bells of a church chiming the hour. I counted ten chimes before I dozed off.

“What are you doing here?” I was woken with a start, it was a female voice. There was someone shining a torch in my face.

“I needed a place to sleep, the door was open and the place looks deserted. Sorry, is it your house?”  

“So, you chose the towns haunted house. Talk about bad luck!” At least it didn’t sound like I was going to get thrown out on the streets.

“I suppose I should ask why are you here? At the dead of night?”

The torch moved away from my eyes and flashed around the room.

“I am a psychic and spiritualist. I have been asked to see if I can bring peace to the spirit that haunts this house. My spirit guide says that you being here is part of the solution. That is good.”

I was about to ask more questions but the room started to get cold. In the distance the church bells chimed midnight.

Then the sounds started, a low undulating “Oooooo ooooo!” 

Then a glowing form started to coalesce in the middle of the room. “Oooooo ooooo!”

I looked at the psychic lady, she was frozen watching the form slowly developing. Then I got the tingling in my hands. I had to play. I must play!

“Oooooo ooooo!”

I hastily pulled my guitar out of its’ case and started to play. Why I played what I did I don’t know. Maybe it was the shape of the form in front of me. An arm raised, a body curled in almost into a ball, well, that’s what it looked like to me. 

I hit a chord, and dum-dum, dum-dum, dumpa!

“Oooooo ooooo! Bloooo Blooo Blue suede shoes …”

We played every Elvis song I knew; the ghost sang them all. We even did ‘Love Me Tender’; I am sure I have never learnt that song, but we covered it. I played and the spirit sang for what seemed liked hours.

Then it disappeared. A voice in my head ‘Elvis has left the building’ was echoed by the Psychic.

“The spirit has gone … Thank you!”  

I looked at my watch five past midnight. My fingers were sore and blistered, I can’t have played for just five minutes, can I? 

Was that fun ?